Two OHS students perform at All-State Band Competition

Two OHS students perform at All-State Band Competition

Musically Inclined: Mike Reynolds (12) and Alex Mathews (11) represented OHS at the All State Band Performance in Lake of the Ozarks.

Members of the Missouri All-State band performed at the Tan-Tar-A Resort in Lake of the Ozarks on Jan. 29. Two students represented OHS in the performance: clarinet player Mike Reynolds (12) and bari saxophone player Alex Mathews (11).

OHS has seen many great musicians throughout the years, but Mathews surprised everyone after the All-state band tryouts; he was named first chair bari saxophone player in the state of Missouri.

“They only take two [bari saxophones],” OHS band director Mr. Vance Brakefield said. “To be considered the best one, that’s fantastic.”

Mathews, Reynolds, Brakefield, and assistant band director Mr. Theron Perkowski left on Wednesday, Jan. 26 for the Tan-Tar-a resort. Upon arriving, the directors were able to attend different clinics, concerts and visit a variety of informational booths while the students rehearsed with their band. The performance was scheduled for that Satruday, leaving only three days to rehearse the new music. But Mathews explained that the young musicians “picked it up quick.”

Brakefield believes that the experience was extremely beneficial to these young musicians. He said it “exposes them to different types of music” that they wouldn’t normally have the chance to play. Their music was “extremely difficult,” even for most collegiate bands. They also had the opportunity to work with their talented director, Col. Lowell Graham.

“It was my first experience in a professional band,” Mathews said. “It was phenomenal.”

Trombone player Emily Muser (12) did not perform with the group but made honorable mention.